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ICS 432 Distributed and Cloud Computing

Covers the fundamental concepts of distributed computer systems and its major branch of cloud computing in which computing is delivered as a service over a network whereby resources are rented rather than owned by the end user. Topics include distributed operating and file systems, cloud-enabling technologies, virtualization, cloud service models, cloud platform architecture, and cloud services including compute, storage, networking, and big data services. Students will gain hands-on experience by implementing projects utilizing public cloud infrastructures like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google App Engine, or Microsoft Azure.


Special information

First day attendance is mandatory.
Note: Students are responsible to both be aware of and abide by prerequisites for ICS courses for which they enroll, and will be administratively dropped from a course if they have not met prerequisites.
4 Undergraduate credits

Effective May 3, 2017 to present

Learning outcomes


  • Recall and explain the fundamental concepts of distributed computing including distributed operating systems, distributed file systems, and design principles of computer clusters.
  • Identify and compare virtualization structures and tools, CPU, memory, and I/O virtualization techniques
  • Explain and give examples of the motivations behind cloud computing, the evolution of the paradigm, its applicability, benefits, as well as current and future challenges.
  • Define and illustrate the basic principles in data center design; cloud management techniques and cloud software deployment considerations.
  • Experiment and differentiate cloud storage technologies and relevant distributed file systems, NoSQL databases and object Storage.
  • Use and contrast different cloud programming models including MapReduce and Spark
  • Experiment and compare the programming support of major cloud service providers including Google App Engine, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Microsoft Azure.